Ecclesiastes 9:5 For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither hany more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.
[The Great Controversy pp 546>547] When, in answer to his prayer, Hezekiah's life was prolonged fifteen years, the grateful king rendered to God a tribute of praise for his great mercy. In this song he tells the reason why he thus rejoices: “The grave cannot praise thee, death cannot celebrate thee; they that go down into the pit cannot hope for thy truth. The living, the living, he shall praise thee, as I do this day.” [Isaiah 38:18, 19.] Popular theology represents the righteous dead as in Heaven, entered into bliss, and praising God with an immortal tongue; but Hezekiah could see no such glorious prospect in death.
With his words agrees the testimony of the psalmist: “In death there is no remembrance of thee; in the grave who shall give thee thanks?” “The dead praise not the Lord, neither any that go down into silence.” [Psalm 6:5; 115:17.] Peter, on the day of Pentecost, declared that the patriarch David “is both dead and buried, and his sepulcher is with us unto this day.” “For David is not ascended into the heavens.” [Acts 2:29, 34.] The fact that David remains in the grave until the resurrection, proves that the righteous do not go to Heaven at death. It is only through the resurrection, and by virtue of the fact that Christ has risen, that David can at last sit at the right hand of God.
And said Paul: “If the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised. And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.” [1 Corinthians 15:16-18.] If for four thousand years the righteous had gone directly to Heaven at death, how could Paul have said that if there is no resurrection, “they which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished”? No resurrection would be necessary.
1st Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
May God add His blessing to the study of His word. “Good night” and God bless!